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  1. #1
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    Scalpel Carbon 2 vs. Anthem X Advanced 1???

    Trying to make the decision between these 2, which one would you choose, and why?
    I can have either one from my LBS for very close to the same price.
    I demo'd the Scalpel and fell in love with it, haven't riden the Anthem yet, but plan to very soon.

    Thoughts appreciated!
    2013 C-Dale Scalpel
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  2. #2
    Trail Junkie
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    They both are very quick handling bikes
    The Scalpel will probably be lighter, but the AX29 will pedal with less bob.
    Giant's Maestro suspension is a bit more sophisticated than that what C'dale uses.

    If I had to choose though, I'd still probably side with the Scalpel Carbon..
    you've already stated that you fell in love with it..that really says it all.
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  3. #3
    davidcarson48
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    I demo'd both this summer. I really liked both. Yes, the Scalpel is a little lighter. It also rode a little more firm than the Anthem but without the benefit of less pedal bob.

    Deciding factors for me were:

    1) Some people have had maintenance/reliability issues with the Lefty.
    2) The rear hub on the stock Scalpel wheelset doesn't seem to hold up well (many teammates with failures)
    3) The Anthem seemed to be a better value overall
    4) The Anthem rode a little more plush, which I preferred.

    To me, the Scalpel is a race bike you can trail ride and the Anthem is a trail bike that you can race. Being that I'm not a serious racer and that this is my only MTB, I went with the Anthem.

  4. #4
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    For suspension performance alone, I'd go with the Anthem. I am not a single pivot fan regardless of how it's executed. The Advanced 1 has a very smart build as well. If I remember correctly, weighing in an XL, it came out to just less than 26lbs w/pedals.
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  5. #5
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    FYI, the maintenance and reliability is much much better on the new Lefty forks. A couple of years ago they switched to Rockshox XX internals which has the added benefit of having the X-Lock remote hydraulic lockout. Also the needle bearing has been moved further up the shaft, and it no longer uses the same type of rubber boot. I would venture to say that the reliability and maintenance intervals match that of the other highend Rockshox forks.

    ..but I haven't had much good luck recently with Fox forks, the last one I had kept gumming up with black "sap'ish" residue on the which lead to oil leaks. The fork was sent in twice and then I sold it after the second warranty.
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  6. #6
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    anthem is a dull steering bike. Was a deal breaker for me. never ridden a scalpel

  7. #7
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    Just a quick numbers comparison

    Cannondale Scalpel Ultimate 29er (M):
    Head Tube Angle: 71*
    Seat Tube Angle: 73.5*
    Chain Stay: 17.5in
    Wheel Base: 43.3in

    Giant Anthem Advanced 0 29er (M):
    Head Tube Angle: 71*
    Seat Tube Angle: 73*
    Chain Stay: 18.2in
    Wheel Base: 43.5in

    Not a big difference at all in these numbers. The Giant has longer stays. Current "wisdom" says this makes the bike slower. IMO reality says that a bike is a combination of all its numbers and not just a representation of one. The wheel bases of each bike are essentially identical. I would say, this just verifies what everyone else says, ride them both and see which one you like, because you can't tell the difference on paper.
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  8. #8
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    Thanks for the great responses, I am hoping to make a decision in the next week or so when I know I will have the funds to pull the trigger, but right now it is looking like the C-Dale. My LBS also has an Anthem on the floor, but it is not a demo like the Scalpel was. I am not sure if a parking lot ride will give me enough of a fuzzy feeling to buy it without riding it in the woods. I bought a brand new 2012 Stumpy FSR Comp Carbon 29er last year on someones opinion without actually demo-ing one. I ultimately ended up hating it and selling it. I will not make that mistake again...
    2013 C-Dale Scalpel
    2013 Scott Genius 930

  9. #9
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    For my riding style "XC" it would be the Scalpel.

    I'm a big fan of single pivot and a bigger fan of Lefty.

  10. #10
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    I have a 2012 scalpel 2 and am very happy. Very light, as mentioned. Handling is quick. I have never had issues with my lefty (2010 flash 29 carbon, or this bike). Scalpel is fast, but you can ride it all day.

  11. #11
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    I am also toying around with the Scalpel 3 alloy as well. It is $2k less than the Carbon version, and I already have a brand new set of Crest wheels I can throw on it that are currently on my Flash. I know the alloy version is a bit heavier, but the spec is still quite good for the price...I am not sure what I am gonna do yet, but I guess this is a "good" problem to have
    2013 C-Dale Scalpel
    2013 Scott Genius 930

  12. #12
    Happy Trails
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    Very, very satisfied with my new Scalpel. Wow, it's a little bit of a stretch to say it changed my life. But only a little. I sure am having fun riding it, and have PR'd every single Strava segment I've been riding consistently. These are both great bikes but I can't imagine anyone being disappointed with a Scalpel for fast XC riding.

  13. #13
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    Having read all the marketing babble provided for each model and looked into different specs and having ridden a few versions of each I would choose the Anthem over the Scalpel all day. The single pivot design just does not seem to work anywhere near as well as the Maestro. The Anthem is a bit heavier but it climbed much better. The bike just felt more solid, better performing and more fun to ride.

  14. #14
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    Im actually in the same predicament right now. Except the anthem is a little cheaper at my LBS. Im looking to start racing.

  15. #15
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    Re: Scalpel Carbon 2 vs. Anthem X Advanced 1???

    I'd just like to know what the OP finally decided to get.
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  16. #16
    davidcarson48
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    Re: Scalpel Carbon 2 vs. Anthem X Advanced 1???

    I continue to have teammates that have problems with the Lefty. Mostly 2012 models, so can't speak of the 2013 Lefty redesign. Shock problems, too. I will say, when the bikes are working they are very happy with them. Lots of hardtails for sale lately!

    One teammate is so fed up that he is considering swapping to a conventional fork.

    I'm still loving my Anthem Advanced 1.

  17. #17
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    Speaking of problems- I've never deal with either Giant or Cannondale. Whos better for service, warranty issues, ect?

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